A Misty but Warm Pengze County in Late Autumn
September has been a calm and peaceful month for Pengze County, Jiangxi Province, as it recovers after being hit by disastrous floods. Although the water has receded, noticeable marks remain on the walls of houses in the county. It has been raining again for the past few days, but this has not dampen Madam He’s mood at all.
Madam He is 54-year-old. She and her husband have two daughters. Her eldest daughters passed way at the age of 26 from brain tumor, and left behind a six-year-old son. Madam He’s youngest daughter is also married. Madam He and her husband takes care of their grandson. Their family has been identified by the local Civil Affairs Department as a low-income household.
On the day of distribution, Madam He put on a bright colored coat and a big smile as she headed towards the humanitarian aid distribution center in Pengze County. The township where Madam He lives in was hit particularly badly by the floods this year. After conducting an assessment, World Vision applied for emergency relief funds to distribute RMB1.7 million worth of humanitarian aid at six of the most affected townships. The items distributed to help provide relief for those affected by the disaster included 144 tons rice, 3,600 quilts and 2,400 family kits.
"I got a quilt, a family kit and two bags of rice," Madam He said with a smile. "These things will help us a lot. The water rose to about a meter, and it destroyed our bed and many household items. The weather is getting colder, so this new quilt will be useful. The wok, steamer, water pail, food containers and tableware are also what we need now. I want to thank the donors and our government for their kindness and for sending us these items.”
Madam He works for a local senior citizen center where she cooks and cleans. Her husband works as a builder. Apart from their daily expenses, all their earnings go to the education for their grandson. They were greatly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic earlier this year as they were unable to go out to work. Without any income, they had to use their savings. Things became worst when their house got flooded. "If we did not receive this rice, we would have to find ways to earn to buy food. Now that I’d received these two bags of rice, our burden has been lighten,” said Madam He.
Their grandson is a senior in middle school. Madam He proudly shares: "He performs very well in his studies. We are happy to work and save up our money because we want to support him in getting a tertiary education." (written by Addie Liao)
►Madam He (left) receiving a quilt donated by World Vision.
►Madam He (right) holding the family kit donated by World Vision.
►A World Vision staff gathering information from Madam He (right) about how her family has been affected by the disaster and also her feedback on the donated items.